Page images
PDF
EPUB

habit, and had many favours and indulgences bestowed upon me, such as I had never before experienced. Among these I reckon one of the principal, that of being allowed to rear

my children, and to see them grow up in peace and plenty. My adventures here have been few; for after the monkey had spitefully bit off the last joint of my tail (for which I had the satisfaction to see him soundly corrected) I kept beyond the length of his chain ; and neither the parrot nor lap-dogs ever dared to molest me. One of the greatest afflictions I have felt here, was the stifling of a whole litter of

iny kittens by a fat old lady, a friend of my

mistress's, who sat down on the chair where they lay, and never perceived the mischief she was doing till she rose, though I pulled her clothes and used all the means in my power to show

my

uneasiness. This misfortune

my mistress took to heart almost as much as myself, and the lady has never since entered our doors. Indeed, both I and mine had ever been treated here with the utmost kindness—perhaps with too much; for to the pampering me with delicacies, together with Mrs. Abigail's f.equent washings, I attribute this asthma, which is now putting an end to my life, rather sooner than its natural period. But I know all was meant well; and with my last breath I charge you all to show your gratitude to our worthy mistress, by every return in your power.

And now, my dear children, farewell; we shall perhaps meet again in a land where there are no dogs to worry us, or boys to torment us-Adieu !

Having thus said, Grimalkin became speechless, and presently departed this life, to the great grief of all the family.

[ocr errors][merged small]

THE LITTLE DOG.

A FABLE.

« WHAT shall I do,” said a very little dog one day to his mother, “ to show my gratitude to our good master, and make myself of some value to him?" I cannot draw or carry burdens, like the horse; nor give him milk, like the cow; nor lend him my covering for his clothing, like the sheep ; nor produce him eggs, like the poultry; nor catch mice and rats so well as the cat. I cannot divert him with singing, like the canaries and linnets; nor can I defend him against robbers, like our relation Towzer. I should not be of use to him even if I were dead, as the hogs are. I am a poor insignificant creature, not worth the cost of keeping ; and I don't

see that I can do a single thing to entitle me to his regard.” So saying, the poor little Dog hung down his head in silent despondency.

“ My dear child,” replied his mother, though your abilities are but small, yet a hearty good-will is suffi. cient to supply all defects. Do but love him dearly, and prove your love hy all the means in your power, and you will not fail to please him."

The little Dog was comforted with this assurance; and on his master's approach, ran to him, licked his feet, gamboled before him, and

before him, and every now and then stopped, wagging his tail, and looking up to his master with expressions of the most humble and affectionate attachment. The master observed him. Ah, little Fido, said he, you are an honest, good-natured little fellow !-and stooped down to pat 'his

head. Poor Fido was ready to go out of his wits for joy.

Fido was now his master's constant companion in his walks, playing and skipping round him, and amusing him by a thousand sportive tricks. He took care, however, not to be troublesome by leaping on him with dirty paws, nor would he follow him into the parlour, unless invited. He also attempted to make himself useful by a number of little services. He would drive away the sparrows as they were stealing the chicken's meat; and would run and bark with the utmost fury at any strange pigs or other animals that offered to come into the yard. He kept the poultry, geese, and pigs, from straying beyond their bounds, and particularly from doing mischief in the garden. He was always ready to alarm Towzer if there was any suspicious noise about

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »